Diners looking to broaden their palates love coming to Hawaii. That’s because the islands aren’t just home to some of the best seafood restaurants in the U.S., they offer a wide range of cuisines and flavors for every appetite. From seafood boil to Japanese udon noodles to world-class steak dinners, when you dine in Hawaii, you dine at the best restaurants.
To make it easier for you to pick your dinner options, we’ve created a list of some of the top-rated restaurants and eateries in Hawaii. And rather than just limit this article to only one single culinary style, we’re offering you the entire range of options, making every night of your stay in the islands a dining adventure.
Make sure you’re prepared to eat at all these restaurants by downloading some GiftYa electronic e-gift cards onto your debit card. E-gift cards are a safe and effective way to treat yourself or others to shopping and dining experiences across the United States. The GiftYa database offers gift cards to a variety of top-rated restaurants, shops, and attractions in the country, so be sure to browse through the listings and see what you can experience on your travels.
1314 S. King St. Ste G2 | Honolulu/ karaicrab.com
If you love seafood boil made with fresh Hawaiian seafood, Karai Crab offers some top-notch dishes. Feast on king crab legs, miso sake clams, and seafood pasta with shrimp, scallops, clams, and mussels in rich tomato and fennel cream sauce. Or go for broke and dine on the famous whole Dungeness Crab, slow roasted with garlic and filled with tasty juices.
“Karai” means “spicy,” and Karai Crab offers spices for every type of palate. Select from four spice levels that go from mild to the red-hot ghost pepper! You can also treat yourself to lighter dishes like the fresh ahi cakes, poke, or vegetarian pasta. And if you’d like to try some different specialty dishes, order the Karai Chicken Wings, fried and tossed with genuine Cajun seasoning — voted best chicken wings in Hawaii by BuzzFeed!
Along with its delicious dishes, Karai Crab is known for its exemplary service. The staff is devoted to making you feel comfortable at every turn, from ensuring that you're seated in the best spot for your party to making sure your food gets to you as quickly as possible. No wonder they've won Open Table's "Diners Choice" multiple times!
“Every time we go to O’ahu from Maui we eat here at least once. The food is top notch just like the service and owner John! The nicest man you will ever meet.” — Yelp Review
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1450 Ala Moana Blvd. Ste 2001 | Ala Moana/ mortons.com
Morton’s The Steakhouse may offer amazing steaks around the world, but we’re betting you’ll find the Hawaiian experience particularly special. Boasting fresh seafood and delicious USDA prime-aged steak, the menu here is simply loaded with spectacular entrees like the Cajun Ribeye Steak, Chicago Style Prime Rib, and Cold Water Lobster Tail. And don’t forget to start your meals with their mouthwatering soups, including the Baked Five Onion Soup and Lobster Bisque.
What truly distinguishes Hawaii’s Morton’s The Steakhouse, however, is its world-class service. While you’re sure to find exceptional staffs elsewhere, the Aloha spirit in Hawaii causes their waiters and servers to devote themselves to making you feel comfortable and relaxed. Be sure to celebrate all your special events and anniversaries here — this kind of food and service deserves to be experienced at a memorable time.
“I strongly recommend the lobster Mac and cheese or the lobster ravioli! The ravioli has a type of mushroom on it that just compliments the lobster flavor so well.” — Yelp Review
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2310 Kuhio Ave Ste 124 | Waikiki/ maragumeudon.com
Hawaii is full of amazing Japanese restaurants, but at Marugame Udon, customers are willing to wait in long lines just to taste their amazing handmade udon noodles. Served in delectable dishes like the Curry Udon, Kake Udon, and Niku Udon, the noodles here offer a special flavor and texture that brings in visitors from across the islands.
Other popular orders include the Vegetable Tempura, fried chicken, and shrimp tempura. Reasonably priced and located in the beautiful Kuhio Banyan Hotel in Waikiki, Marugame Udon is a must for lovers of Japanese cuisine.
“It was so worth waiting, because the handmade udon noodles are AWESOME! So fresh and delicious!” — Yelp Review
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226 Lewers St. Ste L233 | Waikiki/ ruthchris.com
Ruth’s Chris Steakhouse offer a standard of excellence at all of their locations in the United States, and Hawaii’s Waikiki restaurant is no exception. Located on the famous Waikiki Beach Walk, this steakhouse lets you enjoy the classic beauty of Hawaii’s beaches while you treat yourself to a classic steak dinner.
You’ll find their special aged USDA Prime steaks here, broiled in their 1800-degree oven and served on a heated plate, allowing your steaks to sizzle when they arrive at your table. Order their classic filet mignon, cowboy ribeye, or petite filet. For sides, be sure to try the creamed spinach, potatoes au gratin, crab cakes, or stuffed mushrooms. Then for dessert (if you have any room left), don’t miss their delectable flaming strawberries. A can’t-miss restaurant for date night, Ruth’s Chris ensures you have a classy dinner.
“Ruth Chris was the dining spot of choice because of its classic quality and congenial atmosphere.” — Yelp Review
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2310 Kuhio Ave. Courtyard 138 | Waikiki/ ebinomi.com
Visit the Kuhio Banyan Hotel in Waikiki to try the delectable shrimp dishes of EbiNomi. A relatively new restaurant in Hawaii, EbiNomi (literally “shrimps only” in Japan) offers quick-service take-out for diners on the go as well as an attractive courtyard for dine-in service.
When it comes to their shrimp dishes, you can be sure that the specialists at EbiNomi source only premium jumbo shrimp that they peel and cook perfectly so you can experience the crunchy, delicious texture of the shrimp. All dishes are cooked to order, letting you enjoy some very fresh seafood dishes. For dinner, order the EbiKahuku (garlic shrimp) or EbiCurry (made with spices and seasoning direct from Thailand), or the fancy Ebi ala King with its creamy mushroom sauce, onions, and bell peppers.
Side dishes include the Ika Karaage (fried squid), shrimp spring rolls, and EbiCocktail with clam tomato juice. Although small, their menu is bursting with flavor and diners come away with a new appreciation for shrimp dishes and Japanese cuisine.
“We got the garlic shrimp, shrimp curry, and fish and chips — all delicious! We learned that the curry is imported from Thailand. The seafood is amazingly fresh.” — Yelp Review
1680 Kapiolani Blvd | Honolulu/ odori-ko.com
If you and your friends appreciate a good happy hour, stop by the Kapiolani Business Centre in Honolulu and check out Odori-ko. This Japanese/Asian Fusion restaurant offers excellent bars and an early happy hour (4:30pm to 6:00pm) and late-night happy hour (9:00pm to closing). Along with their popular Japanese beer, chardonnay, and sake offerings, you’ll be able to dine on Odori-ko’s sushi set, wafu steak set, nabeyaki udon and more.
Looking for an even more substantial dinner? Then don’t miss Odori-ko’s sashimi specials that include slices of fresh tuna, salmon, and Hamachi. Appetizers include the exquisite shoyu tuna poke and agedashi tofu, while entrees like the chicken karaage, menchi katsu, and vegetable croquette curry will easily satisfy any appetite. Be advised, the menu here offers a substantial variety of sushi, donburi (rice dish), noodle, and seafood dishes, making this one location where you can continually find new favorite dishes. No wonder the diners routinely give them top ratings.
“Love their happy hour! All of the staff is friendly and attentive. The food is delicious and you can’t beat their early or late-night happy hour. Absolutely recommend to anyone who loves yummy Japanese food!” — Yelp Review